What is root canal treatment?
Root canal treatment is needed when the nerve inside a tooth has become infected with bacteria from tooth decay or occasionally, gum disease. The nerve that supplies the tooth needs to be removed, and the remaining space needs to be filled. It is a very delicate procedure which is often fairly time consuming compared to other types of treatment. The success rate of a root canal is generally quite high, but can vary depending on how much of the tooth has broken down because of infection, and how much infection has spread to the roots of the tooth.
How is a root canal carried out?
Firstly, the dentist will numb the tooth that needs to be treated. A thin sheet of plastic will then be secured over the mouth, to protect you from the strong disinfectant needed to clean out the bacteria from the nerve spaces inside the tooth. The dentist will then start cleaning out and shaping the nerve spaces. After the nerves have been removed from the tooth, the space where they have been taken out from is filled with a rubbery material. The tooth is then sealed back up.